Seeing is Believing: May is Healthy Vision Month


Child Getting an eye examMany sighted Americans, even those who wear corrective lenses, take their vision and eye health for granted. Every day, we effortlessly navigate the world, experiencing bright colors, beautiful sunsets; and looking into the faces of our loved ones without a second thought. But eye health includes much more than just the ability to see. According to the National Eye Institute, more than 23 million Americans have never had an eye exam. This means that there are millions of Americans who may be experiencing not just vision problems, but also serious eye diseases, that may go untreated and lead to more serious problems. Here are some answers to some common questions about eye check ups and health:

My vision is fine; do I really need my eyes examined?

The first thing to know is that you may benefit from an eye exam, even if your eyes and vision seem fine. A comprehensive eye exam covers much more than just your vision. Many eye diseases can be asymptomatic, especially in their early stages. In addition, eye problems can be an indicator of other, more serious, health issues like high blood pressure, risk of stroke and diabetes.

How often do I need my eyes checked?

The Cleveland Clinic recommends all children get a comprehensive eye exam at 6 months, around 3 years, and again right before they enter school. After that, it's recommended that young people have an eye exam every 1-2 years until age 19. Adults ages 20-40 can get an exam every 2-4 years; those over age 65 should have an exam every year.

What should I expect during a comprehensive eye exam?

Think of a comprehensive eye exam as a physical for your eyes. The doctor will ask questions about your general health, medical conditions, and any family history of eye problems. Your vision will be tested and measured using simple activities and sophisticated machines. Finally, your eyes will be dilated using special drops, to allow the doctor to see all the way to the back of the eye and to check your eyes' overall health.

How do I keep my eyes healthy?

There's a lot you can do to keep your eyes healthy on a daily basis. Here are a few guidelines to follow:

  • Use protective gear: Whether you're operating a piece of machinery, working with chemicals or doing an extreme sport, it's important to wear protective eyewear appropriate to the activity. Make sure your protective gear is in good shape, and that you wear it properly.
  • Wear sunglasses: UV rays don't just affect your skin they can damage your eyes, too. Even if it's cloudy, it's a good idea to wear sunglasses outdoors as often as possible.
  • Take a rest from screens: Staring at phones and computer screens all day can cause eye strain, fatigue, dryness, burning and itching. Be sure to take a break from the computer zone every 20 minutes, and focus on something in the distance to give your eyes a break.
  • Maintain your overall health: A diet rich in vegetables and leafy greens is great for your eye health. Don't smoke exercise regularly, and manage your stress level to keep your eyes as healthy as possible.

For any health insurance questions, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.

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